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Spring in the Desert


The pomegranates are in bloom, the sweet fragrance of citrus blooms fill the air, and the olive trees planted in the mid-1890’s are beginning to set fruit. I feel very fortunate to live in the Sonoran Desert. Despite the winds which are so prevalent this time of year, it is a beautiful time right now. The days are balmy and bright, the nights cool and dry. The triple digit heat of summer that this desert is famous for is still on the horizon. Everywhere you look, a plant is showing off it’s colorful flowers: the shocking pink of Beaver Tail Prickly Pear, the dazzling yellow of Foothills Palo Verde, the waxy white of Soap Tree Yucca. The endless color varieties of oleander flowers provide a striking backdrop to the stately Saguaro cacti that are just beginning to bloom. Soon delicious fruit will be harvested from these imposing giants of the desert by the Tohono O’odham, a time honored tradition. It won’t be long before the incredibly fragrant inflorescences of the Mexican Blue Palms emerge.

As a lover of plants, especially those from the arid lands of the world, I am in heaven right now. The plants in my collection have awoken from their winter slumber as well. Not all are flowering, but almost all are putting on plenty of new growth. It is indescribable the rush one feels when seeing a new flower bud forming, or tender new leaves emerging. My wife, though not especially enthralled by plants, can still appreciate the incredible beauty of spring in the desert. I give her much credit for humoring me in my plant obsession. I know I’m a nut, but maybe the world could use a few more nuts like me! There are so many problems in the world right now; the constant bombardment of bad news leaves me numb. But I find sustenance and hope in the beauty of nature. I find peace in puttering around with my plants. Most of all, I am happy to be alive and lucky enough to see the glorious desert in all it’s glory. Cheers!

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I love desert cacti. Some have flowers that are so beautiful I can't find words to describe them. I've been collecting them since I was a teenager in the 60s. I would love to be able to see them growing and flowering in their natural home. You are privilaged to be living in such an interesting place.

14 May, 2008


saguaro cacti are amazing plants! How I envy you your proximity to them. I garden in the Temperate zone...with four distinct seasons... It is wonderful to read your blog about an area I have been curious about, but never had the privilege to see, first hand. A friend who has seen the Sonoran desert told me about the painted desert...I am a painter and colour is my thing... you live in a part of the world that has geologic colour as well as colour from vegetation. Lucky You!. I don't know how well I would do in a dry climate...I am used to lots of water around me
what types of wildlife do you have? do you garden for them as well? great blog.

14 May, 2008


A very different place to live than my area! We have green fields, green and purple rolling hills and lots of trees, some flowering, some just fresh green leaves. The sea is only a mile away and it looks blue in the lovely sunny weather that we've been enjoying in the last week or so. My garden has suddenly bloomed - it's what you would imagine an English country garden to be like, with Roses, Delphiniums, Pinks, oh, lots and lots of bright flowers. I wish we had a magic machine to allow us to stroll around each other's home areas and compare them! We'll just have to make do with photos, won't we.

14 May, 2008


sounds anasing! photos please!

4 Jun, 2008


Thanks to everyone for your comments. I will try to post photos soon. The heat is really coming on now- we'll reach 103 F today!

10 Jun, 2008

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